Tipbit, which aims to make your iPhone more useful, now has $4 million in a Series A funding round led by Ignition Partners. It will use the cash to staff up on developers, user interface experts and other technology know-how, according to a statement.
Until now the Bellevue, Wash. startup led by former Microsoft and Citrix executive Gordon Mangione (pictured above at left with chief architect Ewan Mellor) had been funded by friends and family.
Tipbit’s goal is to help people find the stuff they need on their iPhones without having to scroll endlessly through email and contacts. By linking the app to your Gmail or other accounts, Tipbit promises to surface all the relevant information about the task at hand. For example, if you’re meeting Joan Doe at 1 p.m., you click on her contact to get all her recent emails and texts to you, her most recent LinkedIn posts, tweets, bylines, etc. all in one place.
The company also announced Version 2.0 of the software itself which adds instant search that happens in background across all the users social networks, mail, contacts and meeting information — all of this happens while the user remains in her inbox.
Forrester analyst Frank Gillett is a believer. He sees Tipbit as an example of how mobile-first applications are driving innovation but he hopes Tipbit won’t stop there. “Once this gets figured out for mobile, I want the same thing for my desktop. They are rethinking personal productivity tools,” he said. The unsaid thought there is that those tools — Microsoft Office and the like — need a do-over.
In the quest to make smartphones aggregation points for useful information, Tipbit competes with companies like Any,do,Cloze and EasilyDo.
For now Tipbit is focusing on iOS, but plans an iPad-optimized version next to be followed by Android.